CEO arrested, accused of several felony pimping charges

Warrants were issued for Michael Lacey, 68, and James Larkin, 67 after Carl Ferrer, the chief executive for, was arrested this week on charges that allege sex-trafficking victims were forced into prostitution through escort ads posted on the website.

Ferrer is scheduled to appear in court at 1:30 p.m. Wednesday. The website has been under pressure for years to stop running ads for sexual services, especially after website Craigslist, the original online classified web page, shut down a similar area in 2010.

Other classified websites have been accused of allowing sex trafficking in the past.

His attorney did not return a call for comment Saturday but previously said Herrer will fight the "trumped up" charges. "They ignore the holdings of numerous federal courts that the First Amendment protects the ads on", McDougall said.

However, the criminal complaint and affidavit, like the Washington lawsuit filed on behalf of three underage girls, contend that Backstage actively coached advertisers in how to write advertisements in ways that would stay within legal limits while still encouraging commercial sex.

The Washington state Supreme Court similarly ruled past year that the company didn't just host the ads, but helped develop the content.

Lacey and Larkin sold the Phoenix New Times in 2012. That percentage dropped to 90 percent in May 2015, likely due to credit card companies that stopped processing payments to the site, California Department of Justice Special Agent Brian Fichtner said in a declaration in support of the arrest warrant. A message to a spokeswoman for the Texas attorney general drew no response.

"I am gratified by the news that authorities are moving to hold accountable individuals at for their history of putting profits before protecting victims of human trafficking".

The attorney for is blasting the raid on the online classified ad portal's Dallas headquarters and the arrest of chief executive Carl Ferrer as "an election year stunt" on the part of the California attorney general and "not a good-faith action by law enforcement".

The investigation into Backpage's dealings reportedly took years, and last year, the Cook County Sheriff in IL had cut off the website's credit card payment system. During that period, Backpage's revenue from California totaled more than $51 million, the company's self-reporting shows.

Related News:

  • Presidential Polls: Here's the latest numbers for Donald Trump vs. Hillary Clinton

    Clinton is 11 percentage points ahead of Trump, according to an NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll out Sunday. Poll conducted 4,211 interviews w/registered voters online in Nevada , Utah , and the battleground states.
    Damon Gupton joins cast of 'Criminal Minds'

    Damon Gupton joins cast of 'Criminal Minds'

    LOS ANGELES (AP) — Damon Gupton has joined the cast of "Criminal Minds" after Thomas Gibson was sacked last month. Gupton's television credits include starring roles in The Player , The Divide, Prime Suspect and Deadline .

    Odell Beckham Jr. Hugs Kicking Net After Touchdown

    The defense has stepped up this season, not yet allowing an opponent to score 30 points, but there's only so much they can do. Hilton had 10 catches for 171 yards. "It's tough to win in this league". "We're our biggest critic, myself included".
  • Bass Pro and Cabela's combine

    Morris , who founded Bass Pro Shops in 1972, will continue as CEO of the combined company and hold onto his majority ownership. The transaction will bring together Cabela's , Bass Pro Shops and Bass-Pro owned boating company White River Marine Group .
    Miami Herald Announces Endorsement of Hillary Clinton in Presidential Election

    Miami Herald Announces Endorsement of Hillary Clinton in Presidential Election

    He is a registered independent and is leaning toward voting for a third-party candidate, turned off by both Clinton and Trump. There was one "tremendous" room in particular, he said, that I just had to see... "We're going to turn him into Bill Cosby ".

    Asus Transformer Mini Goes on Sales as an Affordable Microsoft Surface Clone

    As reported by Tech Times, huge price discounts are being offered by several retailers on the Surface Pro 4. Microsoft fans can also save $260 when getting the Surface Pro 4 with 256 GB of space.
  • 'Killer Clown' craze sweeps across London as police issue warning

    People who have been approached by the clowns have taken to social media to warn others. The move follows increasing reports of the "killer clowns" across the county.
    Frightened children phone Childline over 'killer clowns'

    Frightened children phone Childline over 'killer clowns'

    One picture also appeared online of Batman appearing to chase one of the clowns, but it remains unclear if it was staged or not. Youngsters terrified by the sinister "killer clown" craze sweeping the United Kingdom have been turning to Childline for help.
    WikiLeaks' Assange promises docs on Google, arms, oil, 9/11

    WikiLeaks' Assange promises docs on Google, arms, oil, 9/11

    Some will come this week and are " significant in relation to the upcoming USA election", Assange said. Assange has been in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London since 2012 to avoid extradition to Sweden.
  • Change your Mafia 3 clothes very soon

    Change your Mafia 3 clothes very soon

    The game's protagonist, Lincoln Clay, is tasked with stealing several vehicles for Thomas Burke, a figure in the Irish mob. Unionist politicians such as DUP MP Jeffrey Donaldson have expressed concern over the depiction of the violence.
    Paris Jackson Visits Neverland Ranch

    Paris Jackson Visits Neverland Ranch

    Prince posted a picture of a sonnet he had penned in memory of his father, whilst Paris reposted it to share her thoughts. The tattooed beauty made the trip with her boyfriend Michael Snoddy , after the two enjoyed a romantic vacation together.

    What Time & TV Channel Is the Dodgers-Cubs Game 1 On Today?

    Zastryzny takes the place of infielder Tommy La Stella, who appeared in just one game in the first round against San Francisco. Friday, there were nearly 3,000 seats available for NLCS Game 1 (which is a lot so close to the cutoff).

Most liked

Donald Trump walked into Miss Teen USA dressing rooms, contestants say
Thirty-four declined to talk or could not be reached. "The time that he walked through the dressing rooms was really shocking". Trump owned the Miss USA pageant for 19 years, along with the Miss Universe and Miss Teen USA competitions.

Ben Stiller secretly battled prostate cancer
The PSA test is a simple blood test which measures the amount of prostate specific antigen (PSA) in your blood, more information can be read online here .

Microsoft Surface Phone Should Look Like This
An article on MSPoweruser points out that it will be better for Microsoft to come up with minor updates for the two devices. It would be a huge surprise if Microsoft did not incorporate sturdier hinges in its next generation of Surface devices.

Early voting begins in Indiana
Because it's so big this year, the postage to mail each ballot is 67 cents, according to Vu. Voter Guide : Review the candidates and print out ballot selections .